AMD Zen CPU Architecture Leads To Big Q4 2018 Gains In Server, Desktop And Notebook Markets

AMD first introduced its 14nm Zen processor architecture in 2017, and it was a turning point for the company’s fortunes in the PC market. This all-new microarchitecture gave rise to Ryzen for the mainstream PC market, Ryzen Threadripper for the high-end desktop (HEDT) market, and EPYC for enterprise customers.

The company followed up on those efforts with its 12nm Zen+ Ryzen 2000 and Ryzen Threadripper 2000 series processors. Mercury Research has released new market share figures for Q4 2018 which shows that AMD is making continued gains against its longtime for: Intel.

In fact, AMD has made gains in all key market segments. Looking at the desktop market, AMD sat with a 12 percent share of the market in Q4 2017, which had increased to 13 percent in Q3 2018. However, for Q4 2018, that figure jumped "bigly" to 15.8 percent. That was a 2.8 share point increase quarter-over-quarter. This was AMD's highest percentage of the desktop processor market since Q4 2014.

AMD market share
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From what we can gather, it appears that the first-generation Ryzen parts were the shock to the system that the PC sector needed. Then, the second-generation 12nm (Zen+) Ryzen family just delivered more of a good thing at very competitive prices which drove adoption across the board.

Moving to the notebook market, AMD has seen its fortunes rise from a 6.9 percent share in Q4 2017 to 12.1 percent for Q4 2018. Again, this was a remarkable 5.3 share point increase compared to Q4 2017, delivering AMD its highest piece of the notebook pie in 5 years.

ryzen 3000 banner

Finally, the highly lucrative sever market also saw gains for AMD. Intel has long dominated in servers with its Xeon processors, and that was evident in Q4 2017 when AMD had just 0.8 percent of the market. But for Q4 2018, AMD clawed its way to hit 3.2 percent. That might not seem like much, but those highly profitable EPYC processors are a big deal when it comes to AMD's bottom line.

AMD is expecting continued growth with EPYC, and shipments more than doubled sequentially according to CEO Lisa Su.

amd epyc

Looking forward, expect to see even stronger growth as AMD's gets into its Zen groove with the 7nm refresh. AMD has already showcased its 7nm "Rome" EPYC processors that will "double the performance per socket" with up to 64 physical cores and 128 threads. Likewise, the company has also previewed its 7nm Zen 2 "Matisse" Ryzen 3000 series processors that will provide a strong challenge to Intel's Core family of processors. There are even rumors that that mainstream Ryzen 3000 family will be available in 12- or 16-core SKUs.

2019 is shaping up to be a banner year for AMD, and we can't wait to see what the company has in store for the [currently undisclosed] Ryzen Threadripper 3000 series.